Here’s a copy of a 7/26/2018 coalition letter, signed by eight groups. And, here are some rebuttal points:
- There is no “…tremendous record of aircraft noise reduction…,” nor is it true that “…U.S. aviation has achieved tremendous noise reductions….”
- The alleged reductions in number of people exposed to aviation noise are achieved by NextGen route concentrations, where flight crews let the aircraft automation fly precisely repetitive flight trajectories. To people on the ground, this means one flight after another and another.
- The alleged reductions are based on a DNL noise metric that is an utter failure; FAA’s insistence on using 65 DNL noise contours does not capture the huge impacts on people.
- The coalition asserts that enplanements have grown 22% since 2000. However, noise impacts are not related to ‘enplanements’, but are proportional to commercial operations (number of takeoffs and landings). The coalition should have included this important fact: aviation operations at the 35 busiest U.S. commercial airports have declined 12% since the peak in 2000. This is not a growing industry; it is a concentrating industry, with increasing monopolies at most airports.
- FAA has a horrible track record on ‘community outreach’. This agency is clearly focused on serving only the industry, and consistently shirks their FOIA responsibilities to obstruct citizen activism.
- We can (and should) have a national airspace system that is stable, safe and efficient, but in balance with the need to preserve communities and health. FAA and industry have both lobbied Congress far too long, creating an imbalance where there is no local control, and where all meaningful noise mitigation procedures have been discarded. The balance and local control must be restored post haste.
- There are no real “…environmental benefits associated with NextGen and the NAS.” Indeed, aviation is the one activity we do that has the highest impact on the air we breathe, for both pollutants and climate change.